We first took Ellie to Wonderland in Telford when she was 12 months old, she wasnt walking and we left feeling quite disappointed.
We recently went back to Wonderland as it is local and we had gone to town for an event that was on. We paid £9 each for me and Luke and under 2s2are free so cost us £18 altogether which if I am honest I still feel is quite expensive seeing as it appears to need some paintwork and few other bits. Which of cause Ellie was oblivious too so didnt dampen her enjoyment at all!
Seeing as Ellie is so confident walking we took her reins and left her to wander on her own with Daddy while I pushed the empty pushchair around (just in case she got tired). She rushed around the paths at the beginning taking it all in. She wasnt fussed by the houses as much, however she did stop to look through each window quickly before moving on. It is this part of Wonderland that I feel looks run down as the houses look exactly the same as they did 20 years ago. They have been painted but its starting to fade and they arent really interactive for the younger children who get bored easily. You can listen to the story of each house but again, not interesting enough to keep an excited toddler there for long. Ellie did enjoy the gingerbread house though as she was able to wander inside and shut the door and play boo. She stayed there playing for ages just running in and out and hiding behind the chocolate door. It was so lovely to watch her be so animated. I took every opportunity to act like a child myself, putting my face in all those boards where it transforms you into a funny picture (I havent got a clue what they are called…does anyone know?) and seeing Ellie laugh at them all. She then wanted a go even though she had no idea what she was doing!
Once we passed all the story/fairytale houses we found the seven dwarves coal mine which was quite fun. There was chance to dig for treasure which for some older children would be fab. Ellie skipped that part as she was too excited about the steps however taking the pushchair meant I needed to use the slopes so met her near the top.
In the last few years they have added “Dinosaur Valley” which Ellie loved. They are giant dinosaurs tucked away behind fences and lots of information boards dotted about that have audio buttons as well as text. Ellie was quite shy to begin with as they really are huge but soon started roaring at them as we walked past. These dinosaurs were once part of Telford Town Park and as kids I remember climbing them and sliding down their tails in to the sandpit…health and safety really wasnt an issue was it? 😂 They were reloccated to Wonderland and I thought it was a nice way of remembering my own childhood fun.
Once you have visited all that (and there is quite a lot to see!) you find the mad hatters tea party table which I believe is used for birthday parties and as much as I wanted a picture-perfect picture of Ellie sat next to Alice and the Mad Hatter (statues) she wasnt playing and was more interested in sitting on the table trying to drink out of the fake teapot that little dormouse sits in.
Also in this area is a large grass area, 7 amusement rides, a crazy maze and a stage. When we arrived there were some mascots waving and meeting the children. All the staff were friendly and very helpful too. Ellie waved to the Paw Patrol mascots but was too shy to meet them. I must add that the rides are completely free and are also unlimited so on a nice day it is easy to spend hours with children taking advantage of the free rides. There is picnic areas and a castle building which includes a place to buy food and drink but also free indoor soft play. We didnt venture in to the soft play area as by this point Ellie was getting quite tired and I felt our visit was nearing an end.
Wonderland is also home to The Wrekin Giant (which again I remember being around when I was younger. The audio board tells the tale of the Giant which is a part of Telford and Shrewsbury history and I think its a lovely way of children knowing the myth that surrounds it.
I wanted to end by talking about my favourite part of Wonderland which is the Winter Wonderland. It is open all year round but I instantly felt all christmassy walking around. You walk around log buildings (which just about fit a pushchair in some) where children can write letters to Santa, draw and colour in a little school and watch mechanical wintery animals in the winter cave. There are also rides in this area, a reindeer sleigh ride and a carousel. Ellie was too small for most of the rides however as I could sit on the carousel with her we decided to go on that one. Ellie sspent the entire ride saying “round and round” which made me and the member of staff giggle. After the third ride going round I was getting far too dizzy and had to carry Ellie off as she was refusing to get off herself. This of cause caused a slight tantrum. Nobody has a perfect day out with no tantrums right?
As we were leaving we saw two mascots in one of the huts meeting children. I decided Ellie would love it as Peppa Pig was one and she has suddenly grown a love for Peppa. We waited a few minutes and Ellie waved loads, I knew I would get a lovely picture finally (hubby isnt good at taking pictures of me and Ellie so we have tonnes of him but few of me. Ellie wasnt quite as keen when we actually stood next to Peppa so the only pics I have is her trying to do a runner 😂. Oh well. Unlike other children’s attractions, meeting the mascots was still free. I appreciate that things like this usualy cost more once inside and although I said to start with the admission price does seem to be quite steep, this is partly why.
Ellie absolutely loved her second trip to Wonderland and this time we didnt leave feeling disappointed. I think she was just too little to really access anything at 12 months old but she ddefinitely made it worth the money with how much she smiled.
If you are looking for something to do around the Shropshire area with kids roughly 2-6 I would definitely recommend Wonderland.